In case you not only follow Neverwinter but the MMO genre as a whole, you surely know that Bless Online had quite a rocky start in the West. Missing endgame content, cash shop controversies, and serious exploits kept the devs busy ever since its early access launch on May 30th. Steam reviews plummeted within hours and several big Youtubers and Twitch streamers released horrible reviews of the game.
While that’s really looking promising, the studio behind the MMORPG, Neowiz, at least was quick to react and promised fixes and improvements in multiple areas. We’d especially like to highlight their approach of dealing with a severe duping exploit that allowed to duplicate any item in the game. The full statement can be found on Steam, but they basically deleted all duped items and gold earned from the bug while also temporarily suspending accounts based on how often the exploit was used.
You can probably still argue that the worst offenders should have been taken out of the game permanently, but otherwise this is exactly how you should deal with such an issue. It’s timely, transparent, rolls back the negative impact of the exploit, and punishes those that tried to profit. The Neverwinter devs and PR team should definitely take a page out of Bless’ book, because dealing with exploits they often tend to fail in at least two of these four key areas. And that’s a shame, because a proper handling of such situations can really help to mitigate the backlash. The Bless reviews for example started to crawl back up after the announcement.
We’ve especially been an advocate for transparency around here, and it’s good to see that other studios agree. In the end it can only help you to get the trust of the players back.
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